per·​son·​i·​fy | \ pər-ˈsä-nə-ˌfī How to pronounce personify (audio) \
personified; personifying

Definition of personify

transitive verb

1 : to conceive of or represent as a person or as having human qualities or powers
2 : to be the embodiment or personification of : incarnate a teacher who personified patience

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Other Words from personify

personifier \ pər-​ˈsä-​nə-​ˌfī(-​ə)r How to pronounce personify (audio) \ noun

Examples of personify in a Sentence

The ancient Greeks personified the forces of nature as gods and goddesses. Justice is personified as a woman with her eyes covered.
Recent Examples on the Web To personify the 2020 Iron Bowl, Cousin Eddie (Randy Quaid) from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation won the audition. J.d. Crowe |, al, "Remember The Mother of All Iron Bowls? Meet her cousin," 25 Nov. 2020 What better way to personify the wild unpredictability that is the second half of the NFL season than the return of Antonio Brown? Phil Thompson,, "Fantasy football lineups for Week 9: Start Deshaun Watson and sit Jonathan Taylor — oh, and about Antonio Brown ...," 4 Nov. 2020 Real-estate experts said Mr. Griffin’s purchase helped fuel legislation that ultimately increased taxes on buyers of luxury homes in New York, and came to personify the issue of wealth inequality in the city. Katherine Clarke, WSJ, "How Citadel CEO Ken Griffin Built a $1 Billion Private Property Portfolio," 8 Oct. 2020 But few people better personify this moment in sports. Ben Cohen, WSJ, "Athletes Are Conquering Distance. Sports Will Never Be the Same.," 2 Oct. 2020 The Statue of Liberty has been an enduring national symbol to personify that very abstract idea. Alex Scimecca, Fortune, "The Statue of Liberty’s origin in photos," 4 July 2020 Anthony Steward, 34, a Milwaukee cook, personified that progress. Eric Morath And Amara Omeokwe, WSJ, "Coronavirus Obliterated Best African-American Job Market on Record," 9 June 2020 But for scene-maker and Value Culture founder Adam Swig, his symbol is personified by goats — those cloven-hoofed, horned members of the biological Bovidae family. Catherine Bigelow,, "San Francisco welcomes British invasion at Mostly British Film Festival," 26 Feb. 2020 The names of the lip colours are Stormi-personified with Give Me Butterflies, a deep coral shade, and Head in the Clouds, a deep pink colour. Shannon Carlin,, "Kylie Jenner’s Stormi Palette Is Cute Enough To Give You Butterflies," 20 Jan. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'personify.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of personify

1728, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for personify

Time Traveler

The first known use of personify was in 1728

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Cite this Entry

“Personify.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for personify



English Language Learners Definition of personify

: to have a lot of (a particular quality) : to be the perfect example of a person who has (a quality)
: to think of or represent (a thing or idea) as a person or as having human qualities or powers


per·​son·​i·​fy | \ pər-ˈsä-nə-ˌfī How to pronounce personify (audio) \
personified; personifying

Kids Definition of personify

: to think of or represent as a person The hero is bravery personified.

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Comments on personify

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